Russia and Japan Seek Resolution of Long-Ago Island Sovereignty Dispute

Shinzo Abe and Vladimir Putin met in Moscow in an attempt to reach a resolution regarding the sovereignty of the Kuril islands that were awarded to Japan after the Russo-Japanese War but were seized by Russia toward the end of World War II.

Continue reading

Why the war between Russia and Japan isn’t over yet

All you need to know about islands at heart of Russia-Japan feud

The decades-old dispute has prevented the two countries from concluding a peace treaty to formally end World War II.

The islands' current population is around 20,000 people [File: The Associated Press]
The islands’ current population is around 20,000 people [File: The Associated Press]

Called the Kurils by Russia and the Northern Territories by Japan, a string of volcanic islands are at the heart of a feud between the two countries that has prevented them signing a formal World War II peace treaty.

Talks stalled for decades due to Japan‘s claim to the four strategic islands seized by the Soviet army in the final days of the war.

Russia and Japan’s leaders meet for talks in Moscow on Tuesday over the disputed island chain.

As Russian President Vladimir Putin and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe are set to meet in Moscow on Tuesday for talks expected to be dominated by the territorial dispute, here are some key facts about the Kuril islands:

Location

The disputed islands of Iturup (Etorofu in Japanese), Kunashir (Kunashiri), Shikotan and Habomai lie at their closest point just a few kilometres off the north coast of Hokkaido in Japan.

They are the southernmost islands in a volcanic chain that separates the Sea of Okhotsk and the Pacific Ocean.

They are located to the southeast of the Russian island of Sakhalin and are administratively part of the same region, although Tokyo considers them part of its Hokkaido prefecture and “illegally occupied by Russia”.

Treaties

Russian Empress Catherine the Great claimed sovereignty over the Kuril islands in 1786 after her government declared they were discovered by “Russian explorers” and therefore “undoubtedly must belong to Russia”.

In the first treaty between tsarist Russia and Japan in 1855, the frontier between the two countries was drawn just north of the four islands closest to Japan.

Twenty years later in 1875, a new treaty handed Tokyo the entire chain, in exchange for Russia gaining full control of the island of Sakhalin.

Japan seized back control of the southern half of Sakhalin after its crushing defeat of Moscow in the 1905 Russo-Japanese War.

Soviet takeover

The Kuril islands have been back at the centre of a dispute between Moscow and Tokyo since Soviet troops invaded them in the final days of World War II.READ MORE

The Kurils: A difficult life on the disputed islands

The USSR only entered into war with Japan on August 9, 1945, just after the United States had dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima.

The Soviet troops completed the takeover of the islands after Japan’s general surrendered later that month.

Russia argues that then-US President Franklin Roosevelt promised Soviet leader Joseph Stalin he could take back the Kurils in exchange for joining the war against Japan when they met at the Yalta conference in February 1945 at which the Allied leaders divided up the post-war world.

The Soviet capture of the islands has since prevented Moscow and Tokyo from signing a formal peace treaty to end the war, despite repeated attempts over the past 70 years to reach an agreement.

In 1956, Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev first offered to give Japan the two smallest islands, Shikotan and Habomai, in exchange for signing a peace treaty but dropped the idea after Tokyo struck a military alliance with Washington.

Strategic value

Strategically, control of the islands ensures Russia has year-round access to the Pacific Ocean for its Pacific Fleet of warships and submarines based in Vladivostok, as the strait between Kunashir and Iturup does not freeze over in winter.

Russia has military bases on the archipelago and has deployed missile systems on the islands.

The islands’ current population is around 20,000 people.

After numerous meetings over the past few years between Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Russian President Vladimir Putin, they have launched various economic projects on the islands in areas such as the farming of fish and shellfish, wind-generated energy, and tourism, though Moscow says investment is still meagre.

Since 2017, the two countries have also agreed on charter flights for Japanese former inhabitants to visit family graves there.

The islands are rich in hot springs and minerals and rare metals such as rhenium, which is used in the production of supersonic aircraft.


SOURCE: AFP NEWS AGENCY on Al-Jazeera

Investors lose over US$8 million invested in Russian ‘Treasure Ship’ ICO

Over US$8 Million Lost by 2,600 Investors in South Korea’s ‘Treasure Ship’ ICO Featured image from Shutterstock. Millions of dollars are estimated to have been sunk by investors seeking a piece of the ‘Russian treasure ship’ ICO fronted by a … Continue reading

Russian warship reportedly carrying billions in gold found

Russian warship reportedly carrying billions in gold found off South Korean island Published: Saturday, July 21st 2018, 7:52 am PDT Updated: Saturday, July 21st 2018, 3:59 pm PDT See and listen to video at //www.wistv.com/clip/14506391/russian-warship-reportedly-carrying-billions-in-gold-found-off-south-korean-island (CNN) – A South Korean firm … Continue reading

Favorite 100th anniversary of the death of the last Russian Tsar

The End of Tsars: What if the Romanov’s weren’t murdered? AMI Newswire by Kathryn Colucci July 17th will mark exactly a century since Tsar Nicholas II, his wife Alexandra and their children were murdered by the Bolsheviks. While that act … Continue reading

Japan lauds Vladimir Putin’s victory as part of Russo-Japanese diplomacy

NATIONAL / POLITICS Japan lauds Vladimir Putin’s victory as isle row anchors Russo-Japanese diplomacy BY DAISUKE KIKUCHI STAFF WRITER The government on Monday welcomed the re-election of Russian President Vladimir Putin and pledged to continue talks with Moscow on settling a long-standing territorial … Continue reading

The Remains of the Romanovs

Red Century Exploring the history and legacy of Communism, 100 years after the Russian Revolution. The Opinion Pages The Remains of the Romanovs  The Russian Imperial family with army officers outside the Catherine Palace.CreditFine Art Images/Heritage Images/Getty Images The Russian … Continue reading

Russia claims it can wipe out whole US Navy without firing a shot

Russia claims it can wipe out whole US Navy without firing a shot and has already paralysed American destroyer Russia has claimed it can wipe out the whole of the US Navy at the flick of a switch – and … Continue reading

28% of Russians want a return of the monarchy

New Poll Shows 28% of Russians Support Restoration of Monarchy Topic: Russian Monarchy This article has been revised and edited from its original by Paul Gilbert, Founder of Royal Russia © 2017   Despite more than 70 years of Communist … Continue reading

100th Anniversary of the completion of the Trans-Siberian Railway

100th Anniversary of the completion of the Trans-Siberian Railway: Five facts about the world’s longest rail line The impressive infrastructural feat was completed in 1916 and remains the backbone of Russia Rachael Revesz New York Labourers worked to build the … Continue reading

New Book Tells Story of Doomed Romanovs

This May will see the release of Simon Sebag Montefiore’s The Romanovs: 1613-1918 in the United States. It is an exhaustive look at the full sweeping arc of Russia’s doomed royal family. The public has an insatiable appetite for the … Continue reading

Intimate Family Portraits of the Romanovs

    The Romanovs in the eyes of their closest attendants Romanov’s home life without pomp and ceremony. By Ksenia Isaeva Scroll down to see more ARCHIVE PHOTO These photographs display the Romanovs’ home life without pomp and ceremony. / … Continue reading

Russia Will Exhume Bodies of Nicholas II and his Wife

Alexander Palace isn’t the only thing being excavated in St. Petersburg. Russia Will Exhume Remains Of Czar Nicholas II And His Wife The czar, his wife and five children were executed in 1918. Russia will dig up the remains for … Continue reading

President Theodore Roosevelt’s Nobel Peace Prize Was Controversial

Apparently, not everyone applauded Teddy Roosevelt for negotiating an end to the Russo-Japanese War THE BLOG What Would TR and Orwell Say? 2:32 PM, APR 6, 2015 • BY GEOFFREY NORMAN We must ever bear in mind that the great … Continue reading

Still Seeking to Normalize Relations with Russia

Still working to normalize relations damaged during the Russo-Japanese War   25 March 2015 Japan-Russia Relations: Toward a Peace Treaty and Beyond What will it take to normalize Japanese-Russian relations? Yoko Hirose recommends 1) resolving the two countries’ Northern Territories disputes, … Continue reading

The Accidental Anarchist is a Top Ten Read in Historical Biographies

1-16 of 1,823 results for Kindle Store : Kindle Unlimited : Biographies & Memoirs : Historical

Sort by 
 Product DetailsEndurance: Shackleton’s Incredible Voyage